Monday, February 16, 2009

Researcher's Notebook #1

Per my preliminary proposal, keeping my researcher's notebook posts here in my blog for committee review.

I think I like research. I think my insatiable curiosity is getting satiated, at least during the process. Each session is intense, and I have 6 groups meeting an hour a week for three weeks. Doc students depend so much on volunteers. I worked hard to design experimental interventions so that the participants would have fun at each experiment. Both types - the annotation (building) and wayfinding (treasure hunt) have elicited spontaneous comments that the experience was fun. The potential frustration level is high in the wayfinding exercise; I find myself working hard to stay within the script and not give too many additional clues, especially since I might do that for one group and not for the other, which would screw up the ability to replicate the experiment. On the other hand, very hard (impossible, in fact) not to intervene if the frustration level gets too high. Documenting whenever that has happened within chat summaries and interpretation.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Hunter Stress

Well, I'm always a little late to the party. I had been watching our guild hunters (the two lvl 80s) doing mindboggling DPS in raids and decided to see what was up with the hunter. I knew Blizz had buffed up the Survival tree, but imagine my surprise, my horror, to find out that none other than the Big Red Kitty himself had respec'd Survival. ZOMG, say it ain't so. But he just couldn't deny the power of the output from the new Survival talents. So...since Fortknight has hit 80 and has been gathering gear and rep., I thought it was time to get Tynaqua back into things. I began with a respec., turning her from BM to Survival. It broke my heart, but DPS is DPS, baby, and that's what hunters do.

It worked out alright, although Tynaqua is only lvl 75 (well, 76 now) and couldn't spec all the way through the explosive shot. The DPS doesn't seem all that outrageous, but maybe I'm just doing something wrong. At any rate, my crit rate bounced way up and I knew I needed a better aggmag pet. When I dinged 76 I headed straight to Sholazar Basin to pick up my gorilladin. I named him Darwin. And here he is. He's a great tank.

I then found a new problem. Switching to Surv from BM meant I could no longer use "exotic" pets. But I had left two in my stables. They were taking up two slots now and I couldn't delete them or pull them out. I submitted a GM ticket and within a 4 hour window I got an email reply. I guess GMs don't float down to solve your problems ingame anymore. Any how, they are going to pull out OMGzilla, my devilsaur, for me. I decided to hold on to the Kurken, named CptainKurken. Why?

LOLz, because the current rumor is that they over buffed Surv and over nerfed BM and are going to balance that in the next patch. So, I may end up back in BM again, and I don't want to have to go all the way back to Ghostlands to grab another Kurken. Dinos are everywhere, but there is only one spot for the Kurken.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Vini, Vidi, PWND

You have to click on that and really look at it. Yes, why are all these people riding on the same sort of bear? What a cool bear; why can't I get one of those? Because you don't have l337 skillz, nøøb! Terror Nova guild does!

These are the war bears that are available as a reward from mighty Thrall himself if, and only if, you can kill all four of the Alliance city Kings: Iron Forge King Magni Bronzebeard, Stormwind King Varian Wrynn, Exodar Leader Velen, and Darnassus Prophet Tyrande Whisperwind.

We planned, we executed, and we were rewarded. Terror Nova, with help from about 4 or 5 friends from a guild we sometimes run with (Morituri te Salutant), got them all down in about 2 hours. [TY shout out to Nog, Mata, Caohmie, Zyran, and Rahil?] THis shot is us milling about by Thrall as our lock readied himself for the first pull. Of course we all had our guild tabards on. It's important to represent when you go behind enemies lines for some serious pwn'ing.

In the prior week we had stashed warlocks in each city, along with two summoners. At the appointed time we summoned in to a safe but closeby spot. We burst forth and nailed the king well before player aggro. Then we mage portal'd the hell outta there. Lather, rinse, repeat. Here what the summonings looked like at Iron Forge and (helicopter view) Stormwind, and Exodar. I forgot to snap a shot at Darnassus. Notice in the IF picture, first one, the two summoning portals.

I'm sure we'll try this again until all our guildies have their bear. Meanwhile, we ride with pride! And, yeah, duh, Fortknight had reached lvl 80 by this time.